Forum Software Upgrade

WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
:DWe have upgraded the forum software to the new version of vBulletin (4.180) which also includes a blog.We will be making some changes to the forums over the next few days. The new version includes quite a few new and updated features, so if you get confused read the FAQ.
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Comments

  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    just when you get used to something it changes. layout seems to be too soft in colors as it makes me think martha stewart was here.:D:p oh i forgot she was recently into stripes too.:roll:
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Yeah, the style on the old version is not compatible, so will be updating the colors and graphics as I get time. Not going to do much more tonight - almost 4 am, but wanted to get it installed to see how it goes.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    blogs can make for some advertising. do we let them go on the blogs?
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    The only ads will be ours. In the future might consider ads from manufacturers such as Midnite Solar, but otherwise no.

    I have not configured any permissions yet, so keep an eye out for that. As far as I know admin and moderators should have same permissions in the blog as the forum.
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,573 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    What about links to old messages/posts, will they work, or are they dead ?
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Nothing in the links should have changed. I did however delete all users that have not logged in or posted for over 600 days, so some very old posts may not show the author.
  • n3qikn3qik Solar Expert Posts: 741 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade
    niel wrote: »
    just when you get used to something it changes.

    2X on that.

    The blue/gray icons are hard to see to tell when a thread has new posts in it.
  • CDN_VTCDN_VT Solar Expert Posts: 492 ✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade
    niel wrote: »
    just when you get used to something it changes.
    Like the funny about the stripes ..
    X3 ,
    I thought I felt a tremor in the Force

    VT
  • TheBackRoadsTheBackRoads Solar Expert Posts: 274 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    NAWS where is the FAQ? I can't figure out how to see what I've already read in a thread when scrolling through, so I have to go by date... kind of a deal breaker.. help? lol :-)
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,992 admin
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    I am not sure what your question is... If it is reading from the first new/unread post in a thread, your user cp stuff appears to be setup correctly (I did change to WYSIWYG editor--shows links and smilie faces instead of VBB tags). You might make sure all cookies are enabled--and you try clearing all of your forum cookies and relogging in and see what happens.

    Otherwise, your account seems to be setup the same as mine (old at top, new at bottom, when I am logged in and reading, the first unread post is where I am in the thread--Although, that does not really work well on my Android phone browser, more or less I have to scroll around towards the bottom to get the latest post).

    If you are missing the "show me the last 24 hours worth of posts" (I love that one), you do have to go elsewhere to find it:
    1. FORUM Tabs (just under Wind Sun logo)
    2. Quick Links (just under tabs)
    3. Today's Posts
    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • TheBackRoadsTheBackRoads Solar Expert Posts: 274 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    It's quite possible its just me (usually is :roll:) but before the change when I read a thread, by the date of post there was a piece of paper looking logo, (which there still is) but it would change color when I've read that thread. I could just buzz down the posts to where I had last read based on those colors... that's probably still clear as mud 8) or I'm crazier than all get out. lol
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade
    NAWS where is the FAQ? I can't figure out how to see what I've already read in a thread when scrolling through, so I have to go by date... kind of a deal breaker.. help? lol :-)

    Right at the top left of the pages - http://forum.solar-electric.com/faq.php

    As far as some colors or icons not showing up well, I will be working on that over the next couple of weeks.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,992 admin
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Red/Green color blindness is fairly common with males... And Red/Green are common colors to layout a website with.

    In a large corporation I worked with, they made us change our engineering documentation website colors to work with "color affected" individuals... Resulted in a garish looking website--but did not hear of anyone complaining about problems differentiating colors/buttons/text (never had anyone complain anyway).

    Color Blindness Simulator


    There is another issue that I have... You get the "new posts" list and click/read/go back. Sometimes the thread would show as "read" (no longer bold), and sometimes they would stay bolded. I assume that was just a limitation of browser/java script/etc. that states were not always being correctly reflected when hitting the "backspace" or "back arrow" buttons.

    If I hit "new posts" button, all of the "read" threads would disappear, as expected.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    An unpleasant surprise after two days of no Internet access. On the old Linux netbook it looks horrible, and there seem to be one or two operational glitches - which may just be the Hughes satellite service here (notoriously poor quality).

    It's going to take a while to make sense out of it all.
  • solar_davesolar_dave Solar Expert Posts: 2,348 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Looks rough on an iPad as well, the top picture forces the text section to about half width on the page. Perhaps the pic could be scaled a bit.
  • bmetbmet Solar Expert Posts: 630 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    I don't like it. The previous version had more contrasting colors, easier to associate than these blending pastels. I spend more time trying to focus around all these blues.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade
    bmet wrote: »
    I don't like it. The previous version had more contrasting colors, easier to associate than these blending pastels. I spend more time trying to focus around all these blues.

    that's exactly what i meant by my saying it looked like martha stewart designed it.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Vbulletin is supposed to issue a major styling and customization upgrade and bug fix around the end of Dec or first of Jan, so probably won't make any real changes to the look and feel until then.

    If anyone has any real issues with being hard to read, see, or whatever I can probably change it pretty easy if it is just color issues.
  • bmetbmet Solar Expert Posts: 630 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    The subtle changes you have made are much appreciated. I can see where I am going now. Thanks Windsun.
    Windsun wrote: »
    Vbulletin is supposed to issue a major styling and customization upgrade and bug fix around the end of Dec or first of Jan, so probably won't make any real changes to the look and feel until then.

    If anyone has any real issues with being hard to read, see, or whatever I can probably change it pretty easy if it is just color issues.
  • WilisWilis Solar Expert Posts: 84 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Thank you Windsun for trying to make this forum better. Older folks have a harder time excepting change. My wife tells me I am to set in my ways. But I will learn the new way the forum works and I think the new added features out number the draw backs. Keep up the good work and thank you very much for this forum. I started out with very little knowledge about solar and now with the help of this forum I have had off grid power, when needed, for over a year. Not one other forum on the net comes close to giving correct information about solar as this one does. Hope everyone has a good Holiday and the New Year bring lots of sun shining on your PV. Wilis
  • techntrektechntrek Solar Expert Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    I have found the thread search doesn't work very well with this new software. I can enter my handle and exact words in a post I know I've made and it won't find it.
    4.5 kw APC UPS powered by a Prius, 12 kw Generac, Honda EU3000is
  • CMcDCMcD Registered Users Posts: 6
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    I see a lot of buttons - Forum Actions, Quick Links, Thread Tools, Quick Navigation. Not one of these says "post a new thread".

    You can reply to threads from the forum, why not a quick link to start a new post?

    FAQ also does not tell you how to actually start a new post (which buttons to push), just formatting etc. It is a real struggle for us new users.

    I have only posted once before, and now I forget how to do it. Searching for help or instructions reveals nothing.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    cmcd,
    you skipped something somewhere as i see the link just fine. when the forum page is first up you would see general categories like this one is solar forum news and announcements. now in clicking on that, instead of what you see on the right side, will show in the upper left hand side "post a new thread" just as bold as life. what you did i believe was to click onto the last thread which was displayed on the right side of solar forum news and announcements.
  • CMcDCMcD Registered Users Posts: 6
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Thank you Niel,

    I see now that you have to choose a topic category before you can post an new thread.

    Perhaps you could add something like:

    "When you want to start a new post, first select which topic category you want to talk about ..."

    on you FAQ page. I would be a great help to us newbies. Thanks again.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,992 admin
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Yea, that is the missing part... You have to choose a sub-forum first to see the "+ Post New Thread" buttons at the left top/bottom of page.

    Think it is bad for new users? The new software (a few weeks now) moved all of the moderation stuff around (and added a blog function). I am sometimes just as lost trying to find the right button(s) too (fortunately, a well behaved group of people here and we don't need to do much moderation here other than banning the occasional spammer).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    The updated version (4.1.10) of the forum software is out, which should fix some bugs and most of the display and graphics issues, but I am not going to install it for a couple of weeks in case there are bugs or glitches with it. It should not affect the way the forum works, the update is mainly to fix some issues with custom styles, especially color and font size issues.
  • JamesJames Solar Expert Posts: 246 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    I have found viewing the new update somewhat difficult. This issue might have already been discussed, if so, sorry. the light blue color of the thread posting titles are difficult for me to see, especially the far right. The lighter blue color almost washes out on my screen becuase i need to increase the screen brightness due to my eyesight. I'm not sure if others "see" this as an issue. I just wanted to add my comment about it. I have adjusted my screen contrast and brightness levels to attemp to improve the readability.
    thanks.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Yes, the colors have been an issue, as the style files in the current version have a few bugs, making it hard to change the colors on some things. It looks like the new version is stable, so will try to get that installed this weekend or early next week.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    Sometime in the next 3 or 4 days this forum will be moving/upgrading to a dedicated server. In theory, there should be almost no effect and no more than a few minutes of downtime. It should speed up the response time quite a bit, and will also allow us to turn on or enhance a few more features. Once it is up and running for a few days to make sure all is OK will be upgrading the forum software to the latest version.

    The server upgrade will also allow us to add some more discussion sections without overloading the server if there is enough interest in new topics.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Forum Software Upgrade

    New Server is now in the process of being migrated, if all goes well it should be done and the forum switched over by tomorrow (Feb 6 2012) noon. Please let us know ASAP of any problems. For anyone interested we are getting the Dedicated II with dual core processor so it should speed things up considerably and also allow us to expand the board and start using the blog without overloading. http://www.lpdedicated.com/servers/linux-dedicated-hosting/
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